DeFazio and Wu take on Obama

A Seattle newspaper reports that both Oregon Congressman Peter DeFazio and Congressman David Wu have signed on to a protest letter by Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vermont) taking Obama on the Bush Tax Cuts calling it unfair. Also several Washington Democrat members of Congress have signed the letter as well.

See letter below:
Letter from Rep. Peter Welch

Dear Madam Speaker,

We oppose acceding to Republican demands to extend the Bush tax cuts to millionaires and billionaires for two reasons.

First, it is fiscally irresponsible. Adding more than $900 billion to our national debt, as this proposal would do, handcuffs our ability to offer a balanced plan to achieve fiscal stability without a punishing effect on our current commitments, including Social Security and Medicare.

Second, it is grossly unfair. This proposal will hurt, not help, the majority of Americans in the middle class and those working hard to get there. Even as Republicans seek to add billions more to our national debt in tax cuts to the wealthy, they oppose extending unemployment benefits to workers and resist COLA increases to seniors.

Without a doubt, the very same people who support this addition to our debt will oppose raising the debt ceiling to pay for it.

We support extending tax cuts in full to 98 percent of American taxpayers, as the President initially proposed. He should not back down. Nor should we.


Peter Welch

  • Sol668

    The conservative goal is simple and has been the same for 30 years.

    Bankrupt the government with tax breaks for the wealthy, to prevent spending on the social programs you can’t beat at the polls.

    • Rupert in Springfield

      Um, well, considering that there have been revenue increases after such tax cuts this line of argument is something of a non starter.

      As for beating you guys at the polls, we just did.

      Maybe you want to try and entrapment defense? Lol!

      • SOl668

        When the economy grows so to does tax revenue….so what did the bush tax cuts do for revenue in 08? 09? 10?

        Revenue fell dramatically.

        Go on run on a platform to immediatly cut the SS benefits and medicare of your largely elderly base, go on, lets see how well you do at the polls…..Destroying SS and medicare isn’t a winnable position, and the GOP doens’t run on it.

        I don’t make the defense teams decisions rupert…

        they do

        • Rupert in Springfield

          >When the economy grows so to does tax revenue

          I will never understand why liberals see this statement, which is a statement of the obvious, supports their position.

          Since pretty much any economist will tell you that taxes hinder economic growth, you would think at some point one of you guys would realize this statement immediately tanks your position.

          Of course that would be asking you to actually analyze your argument.

          Instead we see you do the nutty liberal routine with this statement:

          >Destroying SS and medicare isn’t a winnable position, and the GOP doens’t run on it.

          Yeah, right, and no one is running on it, suggesting it, or otherwise maintaining that position.

          So why are you even bringing it up?

          Destroying the entire Navy, Blowing up Connecticut, or demanding that the entire state of California switch to all all pizza diet are also not winnable positions and no one is running on them either.

          Why in the world are you inventing positions no one is taking and then pointing out they are unwinnable?

          Do you see how all this does it make you look like someone who cannot stay on topic and is endlessly flailing around in search of something that will stick?

          In short, your central thesis is wrong – Tax cuts are generally not not followed by lower revenue, thus you cannot blame them for some sort of weird plot to starve social programs. Tax cuts are a tool to spur economic growth and generally are the most immediate way to spur such growth. They are not the only way, there are others, tax cuts are just the most immediate thus often used. Your maintaining tax cuts have no relationship with growth is your opinion, but unfortunately it is wildly divergent from actual reality and economic theory.

          My guess is you know this, thus your spouting off with the cut SS payments nonsense. Its classic diversion.

          • Founding Fathers

            Rupert, so, where was the great boom in employment in 1982 and 1983 after the Reagan tax cuts?

            Oh right, there wasn’t one.

            Where was the great boom in employment in 2002 and 2003 after the Bush tax cuts?

            Oh right, there wasn’t one.

            Where was the great drop in employment in 1994 and 1995 after the Clinton tax increase?

            Oh right, there wasn’t one.

          • Steve Plunk

            Tax cuts do not work in a vacuum absent any other factors that might influence the economy. Wars, oil shocks, and other economic inputs work along with tax cuts. What history does show is over the long term lower tax rates spur economic growth, higher employment, and eventually higher tax receipts.

            We should stop calling this a tax cut. The current rates have been around long enough to not even be considered temporary. Without action this would be a tax increase during an economic downturn. Obama’s former economic adviser admits raising taxes now would be a foolish move and applauds the compromise.

            The deficit issue has never been one of lack of revenue but instead is one of spending too much. Growing the economy should be the priority as a growing economy will offset any lost revenue from not raising taxes. Unless something is done soon we can expect a sell off of stock to avoid the higher taxes. Such a sell off will mark the beginning of the double dip so many fear.

          • Rupert in Springfield

            >Unless something is done soon we can expect a sell off of stock to avoid the higher taxes. Such a sell off will mark the beginning of the double dip so many fear.

            Good points in your post but on this one I actually wonder if the administration hasn’t covered its bases.

            It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out there will be a sell of if capitol gains rates jump precipitously. I am sure Obama is aware of this and that it would be hard to deflect blame from his tax increase, should it happen.

            However the Fed has the QE2 program in place.

            That gives the government huge control over stock valuation. I would say its a possibility that if capitol gains do go up, you will see a sell off in the stock market that could be countered by QE2. I am not saying this is a sure thing, but I am saying I would not bet that an increase in capitol gains will result in as big a drop in the market as people are thinking.

            Of course should the Fed use QE2 to accomplish this, it only increases the severity of the house of cards things are built on at the moment.

            It’s kind of funny, liberals will condemn any attempt to give the people a cap gains tax cut to bolster the market, however they will tolerate and defend government buying up stocks to accomplish the same thing. All part of the natural totalitarian impulse of the left in my opinion.

          • Rupert in Springfield

            >Rupert, so, where was the great boom in employment in 1982 and 1983 after the Reagan tax cuts? Oh right, there wasn’t one.

            You missed the greatest economic expansion since WW2?

            Of course not, you just are making things up again.

            >Where was the great boom in employment in 2002 and 2003 after the Bush tax cuts? Oh right, there wasn’t one.

            You missed that we turned around the economic plummet after 9/11 and experienced a sustained economic growth of 3% beating virtually every industrialized nation at the time?

            Of course not, you are making things up again.

            >Where was the great drop in employment in 1994 and 1995 after the Clinton tax increase?

            Considering Clinton himself projected nothing but $300B deficits for the next ten years out in the first budget he sent up after the Republican take over in 94, this is especially silly.

            Nice try, but when you make things up it gets real hard to make your case.

            Maybe you should try actually checking your facts a little more?

            Hey, by the way, did you ever figure out a war where it was paid for before troops were landed on the ground? I mean you were on and one about Bush running the war as a deficit item as somehow remarkable I would think you would have at least one example.

            We are all still waiting on that one. I doubt you will ever come up with an answer to it, Ive noticed your tendency is to attempt a topic shift or run away when you get asked to give an example or back up one of your outlandish claims.

          • Founding Fathers

            “You missed the greatest economic expansion since WW2?”

            Yes, I missed it, because it didn’t happen.

            In 1982 we had a recession, with real GDP declining 1.9%. Yes, GDP increased in 2003 and 2004, but it also gave us the term “jobless recovery”. Despite real GDP growth of 4.5% in 2003, average unemployment for the year was 9.6%. The following year, with booming real GDP growth of 7.2%, we had unemployment of 7.5%.

            It was a boom for the rich, not for the average working person.

            By the way, the average annual increase in real GDP was 3.4% during the Reagan administration. The “greatest economic expansion since WW2” was bested by the 3.7% average annual increase during the Clinton administration, and barely beat the 3.3% average annual increase of the Carter administration.

            Meanwhile, the average unemployment rate during Reagan’s 8 years was a whopping 7.5%, and only 5.2% during the Clinton administration, and only 6.5% during the Carter administration.

            The unemployment rate dropped EVERY YEAR of the Clinton administration. You can’t say that about Reagan. You can’t say that about GHW Bush. You can’t say that about GW Bush.

            “>Where was the great drop in employment in 1994 and 1995 after the Clinton tax increase?

            Considering Clinton himself projected nothing but $300B deficits for the next ten years out in the first budget he sent up after the Republican take over in 94, this is especially silly.”

            You’re not even coming close to addressing my point. I’m talking about employment, because Right Wing dogma is that taxes kills jobs. Reagan cut taxes on the wealthy, and unemployment skyrocketed. Clinton raised taxes on the wealthy, and unemployment went down for 8 years in a row.

            I’m not making things up. It’s really quite easy to look up the unemployment rates — check them out for yourself. After the Reagan tax cuts, unemployment really did go up. I’m not making that up, and you can look it out for yourself.

            After the Clinton tax increase, unemployment really did go down. I’m not making that up, and you can look it up for yourself.

            After the Bush tax cuts, unemployment really did go up. I’m not making that up, and you can look it up for yourself.

            But you won’t, because you’re afraid that it might rock your cozy little world view that taxes are BAD BAD BAD, and that all things liberal are BAD BAD BAD.

      • “”

        Sol(substance outa’ luck)668 is ‘entitled’ to opinion ate – yet again, the smoke fails to make it to the top of his chimney. Pity!

        • Sol668

          Please cut todays SS checks to retirees, find out just how RWing this nation is

          • “”

            what’s in your PERS, chum?

          • SOL668

            I know you need your little rhetorical nonsense about why portlanders reject your ridiculous ideology…

            But here’s a hint, per capita, the government spends MORE on rural oregonians.

            I personally have never held a government job, nor do I know anyone in portland who has….There is no economic incentifive for me to vote against the GOP, I do so for cultural reasons.

          • “”

            sew, why do resound like a potlander, monsewer. sheesh!

    • DUH

      What have the deficits under Obama and the Democrats been again? 3 times as large as any other Presidents in his 1st 2 years………….yeah, its the GOPers fault. Your own logic is illogical.

      • Sol668

        Did Reagan cut spending? NO he ran massive deficits

        What about GW bush the first? Nope, massive deficits, which he tried to address with a tax hike…

        For 8 years you were silent as cheney and bush said flat out “deficits don’t matter”.

        However, today, with the democrats in power, oooh boy to deficits matter…so what cuts have the GOP proposed to offset the 700 billion over 10 years the extension for the wealthiest will cost?

        None, as the GOP wants the deficit to increase, to provide justification for their real desire, and end to the social safety net

        • DUH

          Who has run up the first and 2nd trillion dollar deficits? Obama and the Democrats… Reagan? Half the people on this site weren’t even alive when he was President, try living in this day and age!

          • Founding Fathers

            “Who has run up the first and 2nd trillion dollar deficits? Obama and the Democrats…”


            You’ll notice that on 1/22/2008, at the beginning of Bush’s last year, the total national debt was $9.2 Trillion. A year later, it was $10.6 trillion. That’d be a $1.4 trillion deficit.

            Are right wingers even capable of telling the truth?

            Also, if Reagan is irrelevant. why do right wingers still evoke him every chance they get? Then, when it’s pointed out what an economic disaster his first term was, they say “oh, but that was SO LONG AGO.”

    • Scatcatpdx

      Your right but dam it it not working, the rascally rich only invest it and creates more economic activity and more jobs. We liberal even get more tax dollars. How can the evil Republican bankrupt the economy when all tax breaks do is make the economy better.

      It easy to be a liberal not common sense needed.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    Oh boo hoo already with the tax cuts. This country has probably lost more revenue from the dithering over this issue than the potential loss from extension of the tax cuts to upper brackets.

    My question is could these guys actually get the tax cuts out of the way and work on something productive?

    Item one on the agenda after the tax cuts should be an extension of Obama care waivers.

    In just the last three weeks 222 more employers got waivers from this dopey plane.

    Could we please work out an orderly and efficient process by which any employer could write in and get an automatic waiver?

    I mean its ridiculous – when you have this many waivers going out its really clear the legislation is a dud.

    Time to move on and give Obama a face saving way out. Lets just have waivers for anyone who wants them, That way no one suffers under Obama care, everyone who thinks its great can stay in and Obama gets to pretend like he did something.

    • Anonymous

      “My question is could these guys actually get the tax cuts out of the way and work on something productive?”

      Who is that directed towards? Republicans?

      • Rupert in Springfield

        Both parties.

        Everyone knows the position of both parties. I dont think there is a lot to work out here. Either pass the tax cuts in their totality now, or wait until January and pass them in their totality retroactively at that time.

        I dont think Republicans really need to wheel and deal on this one. If Obama wants to throw in unemployment extension, fine, I’m willing to take the tax increase and move on.

        Right now its just a waiting game for the lame duck session to end. Republicans should be working on some sort of easy exemption process for Obama care so that is ready to go in January.

        Don’t waste time negotiating with people who will soon be out of power, spend the time now planning your strategy for when you are in power.

        Big hint to the Republicans – if you don’t have a real good strategy for the coming budget showdown, and if you dont think Obama will be tempted to shut down the government like happened under Clinton you are fooling yourselves.

  • DUH

    They will both be good litle boys and vote yes if told to.

    • Sol668

      Should they do so, they can expect a vigorous challenge from the left in this state come the next election cycle, which maybe unable to defeat them outright, but certainly assures that whatever GOP challenger they face, wins easily as the base stays home.

      • Rupert in Springfield

        Uh, wait a second, haven’t you always told us progressives were on the ascendancy on Oregon?

        Now you are saying a vigorous left wing candidate couldn’t win if DeFazio and Wu dont tow the progressive line?

        Which is it?

        Are you guys winning or losing?

      • DUH

        Yeah right! Pipe dreams and idle threats, you’ll vote for them all the same even if they do vote for Obama’s bill.

      • Rupert in Springfield

        BTW, Sol668

        I was interested in your odd idea that someone who didn’t support your contention that the Portland bomber was entraped by law enforcement was a bigot. Frankly this seemed insane to me, because I dont think many out there would feel there was entrapment in this case.

        Well, turns out you are right about one thing, the defense is actually not unheard of, which is what I would have thought. I was surprised because it seems so improbable that it would actually convince anyone. In fact, yes, this defense has been used in the past for this situation, a terrorist sting operation. Knock me over with a feather! I was totally and completely wrong on this count.

        However, I was right on the essential count, the defense has been extremely unsuccessful. Despite being used in similar terrorist sting operations, not once since 9/11 has the defense ever resulted in acquittal in a terrorist sting case.

        So apparently not one jury has agreed with you in past instances of this sort of thing.

        I wonder how you feel about that?

        Are all these juries that haven’t bought your argument to be considered bigots?

        Maybe your contention that someone who doesn’t support an entrapment defense is a bigot is something you should think about.

        Here you go:

  • Bob Clark

    The Bond market says keeping income tax and capital gains rates stable at 2010 levels will spur the economy, and might actually lessen the need for the Federal Reserve to launch Quantitative Easing phase 3 (QE3). Positive Keynesian economics something even Democrat JFK used, and now, Bama realizes the need for it as he worries about the shape of the economy come 2012.

    Defazio and Wu are woeful drains on american prosperity. They never cared about deficits before now, and now all of sudden they become deficit fighters. Right! They are really opposed because this compromise ends Build American Bonds (BABs) which are used to fund frivilous spending by the city of Portland, state of Oregon, and California state government. In the latter case, they actually function as a bail out of failed socialist policies.

    Ain’t about deficits for Woeful Wu and Defazio. Its really about cutting off the punch bowl called BABs.

    • Rupert in Springfield

      That the acronym for that is BABS (a la Ms. Streisand) is just too funny.

      DeFazio is absurd with his sudden deficit concerns. During his town halls he said that the one message he got out of it was that he sensed people really felt Obama care needed to be paid for. When he turned around and voted for Obama care with the hokey accounting it used to feign deficit neutrality I lost all respect for him. I can’t say I ever voted for the man, but I did respect his opinion and generally thought he was a reasoned individual who expressed himself well and had solid grounds for his positions. At this stage of the game though its a little much to take him seriously on the deficit. Not when he voted for Obama care with its mystery Medicare cuts and using ten years of revenue to pay for six years of benefits scams.

    • Oregon Native

      Who knows what is going to happen with QE3, as it being almost “not” discuss now in Washington, as many state’s bonds the guanteeded partially ( maybe 23%) by the/our Federal Goverment, cannot support through taxiation, anymore. Our Congress people and Senators will postpone and postpone on this issue until the final moment at about 11:00 pm December 31st, 2010 to cover their butts. Half of them have been voted back in or out, (whoever), and half more to go next round.
      Tax Cuts to the supposely Rich, about 1/2 % of the population. Are we talking about the Gates family that own Microsoft, or Ceo’s of Corporations, maybe Bankers. They certainly pay there share of taxes about 35% (?) of the total taxes collected and also contribute the majority of donations to charible organization. I am appalled that our David Wu and Peter DeFanzio signed such a letter as they really did know what would happen to the average taxpayer if the Tax Cuts by a previous administration were change. They can now say anything they want as they have been voted back in by the majority and have a four year ride with all those goverment benefits, and a different medical plan than their constuients.
      Yes, if they increase the capitol gains tax, I will sell my investments that I started way back in the late 70’s early $80s to a least retain a portion of what I have invested. Bought a stock with my hard earned self-employed income in the early 80’s ( Interest at 12%, Jimmy Carter administration), for $10 and now it is at $40.00., not forgetting a 2% return a year, in which is a average srock market return. Let me see how this works out ….1980 to 2010…(30 years) . Let us just say the stock ran up to $40.00 the first year and always stay there. Let us also say I own 10 shares ( nobody owns just 1 share…anyway). My 2% dividend return equal $8.00 per year minus… whatever, lets say 20% State and Federal Taxes = minus $ 1.60 = $6.40 per year x 30 years =
      $ 192.00 in my pocket.
      Stay with me here as this get more interesting
      Now, my investment has grown $30.00 per share over the last 30 years ( my retirement ) from $ 10,000.00 to $40,000.00. Already I have to pay State and Federal Goverment lets say combined 20% before the end of 2010. So $30,000 capitol gains minus 20% immediatly when I sell equals about $ 3,600.00 in which make all those 30 years a gain of $26,000.00 + Dividends after taxes of $192.00 = $26,192.00 divided by 30 years equals a $ 873.00 profit per year un-taxed for my retirement.
      Now if I happen to be lucky and have no children, no medical, no college expense, and of course no job lost, no divorces, no anything other day to day cost, that anyone might have expierence through 30 years, I would have $26,000.00 + today. Does any one really believe that $800+ a year is saved.

      Now our representives David WU & Peter Defanzio object.

      Give me a break, where is the petition to recall them on this action. While they will always be paid goverment PERS and a health plan that is not even closee for what they voted for US, the public.

    • Rob DeHarpport

      Bob, you are right on target- DeFazio is only worried about how much “pork” he may not be able to bring home via his senior position on the Transportation Committee. We need light rail like we need another liberal/socialist representative in Oregon or more bike paths–PLEASE! Let’s get to work getting America working. We had our chances to send these two packing in November– lets do it in 2012!! DeFazio also voted for the Dream Act today– anyone surprised??
      We need to loosen regulations, neuter the EPA and various other out of control agencies rewrite the ESA act while we are at it. The litigation and over regulation have killed more jobs than….
      Instead of taking real action to correct the course we are on, we are giving a free pass & education to illegal immigrants.

  • Monterey

    What a bunch of BS. Leaving more $$ in the private sector for small business to hire with does NOT harm anyone. This is leftist propaganda. We already take 38% from the highest earners. More with the limits in tax deductions, it goes up to over 40%. This is not enough?? They should try giving 40% of their earnings to the government, which spends incredibly wastefully. It is not taxpayer’s fault that congress is so irresponsible and is trying to Cloward-Piven us into oblivion. THEY need to stop their wild spending; how about starting with ditching the millions given to NPR, which receives 98% from other sources? Clearly, they don’t need those millions. How about stopping giving $193,400 to the late robert Byrd’s kids and grandkids, that recently got put into the budget! And for what? So he doesn’t have to save and buy life insurance like the rest of us??? People, congress uses your $$ so wastefully it’s a crime. Learn more! Call them and complain! We have a spending problem; not a taxing problem. The democrats just want to tax people for punching bags. 40% is enough!

  • Omen

    Oregon has one common sense Rep (Walden)in Congress. All others, ay-y-y-y, ‘cluding DeFonzio – a flocking bunch of left wing kookaburra bards:

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